How To Write Killer Email Subject Lines

The subject line of an email is the first thing to gain the attention of the recipients. It often becomes the deciding factor for whether someone opens the email to read it or deletes it right away. An email should always have a good and convincing subject line. Emails lacking a good subject line often go ignored or deleted.

No matter what they say, people do judge emails by their subject lines. In fact, 47% of email recipients decide whether or not to open an email based on subject line alone. That’s why it’s so important to craft subject lines that are compelling enough to get people to click through. While the subject may seem like a small part of your message, they’re one of the very first impressions you have on your email recipients.

Here are ways on how to write killer email subject lines:

1. Personalize The Subject Line

A personalized subject line is always a smarter idea to catch someone’s attention. It gives a feeling of personal attention to the recipients. When sending emails from a company, one has to send the same emails to multiple recipients. However, a personalized subject line for each recipient should be drafted giving an impression that the mail is drafted for each recipient individually. It is advised to use the name of the recipient, the city where they may be located or something else that they can relate to.

2. Use “Action” Verbs

Since subject lines are basically calls to action, it’s important to use language that inspires people to act. Subject lines that start out with action verbs are generally a lot more enticing, meaning that your emails will be significantly more clickable if you add a compelling action verb at the beginning.

3. Use Numbers

Using numbers and data is a clever email marketing tactic as it automatically catches your recipient’s attention and provides a clear view of what he/she can expect to find in your email. Quantifiable information is also straightforward, logical and easy to digest.

4. The Shorter The Better

Short subject lines can be read by the subscribers at a glance. Moreover, mobile phones have become the primary email reading device. Short subject lines are easier to be read on the mobile and don’t get cut off. If you have a really long subject line, you may lose the interest of the reviewer rather quickly.

5. Don’t Be Afraid To Use Humor

Subtle, creative humor is typically appreciated by even the most conservative of people. Based on the tone that your company’s brand incorporates, utilize some humor such as a clever pun to try in your subject lines as a test and see if it increases engagement. Using humor can be a great way to captivate your recipients!

6. Don’t Make False Promises

Your email subject line is making a promise to your reader about what you will deliver in your message. Make sure that you make good on that commitment. Do not try to get your email opened by making false promises. This will irk your audience and they’ll learn not to trust your subject lines, resulting in a lower open rate and a higher unsubscribe rate.

7. Induce Curiosity

The subject line should be capable enough to induce curiosity in the recipients. It should be interesting and ambitious enough to trigger them to know more about what’s inside the email. Though it should give some idea of the email content, the entire content of the email should not be disclosed. It should make the receipts curious enough to check out what is actually inside.

8. Use Concise Language

Keep in mind that people scan their inboxes very quickly, so the more clear and concise your subject line is, the better. It’s usually a lot better to be concise than it is to use complex and flowery language. When you’re going for a concise subject line, think first about how your email will benefit your recipients. You’ll want to make that benefit very clear right out of the gates.

9. Address Their Needs

Put yourself in your target audience’s shoes and compose your subject lines based on their needs. Address their fears and how you can resolve them. Put yourself in their perspective and think about what it would take for them to open an email versus deleting it. Figure out what gets them excited and you’ll be on your way to a great subject line.

10. Relax On The Caps Lock 

Though capital letters grab attention easily and rapidly, it is advised not to use all capitals especially in an email subject. In written communication, it is considered to be yelling at your recipients and obviously, that is not your motto.


Over the years, I have had a lot of success in cold emailing. Whether it’s been pitching my services to a new client or getting the attention of a new mentor, I’ve been able to achieve a lot of my success with the use of killer subject lines in emails. In this post, I shared with you ways on how to write killer email subject lines.

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